Delicious Living Blog

Prevent mindless snacking with ... lunch!

Learn why "grazing" throughout the day is flawed, plus a recipe for the best vegetarian sandwich ever.

You craft the perfect acai smoothie for breakfast. You eat a veggie-packed kale salad for lunch. You dutifully eat two squares of organic, dark chocolate mid-afternoon (you know, for the antioxidants). You think you have a pretty decent diet. But do you also grapple with daily diet slip-ups that unhinge your otherwise sterling eating pattern?

I firmly believe that indulgences are an important part of healthy eating, such as your aunt’s blue-ribbon coffee cake or that special date-night caramel gelato. But what about the handful of M&Ms scooped off your co-workers desk? Or the night you just had tortilla chips and guac for dinner?

Some nutritionists argue that the reason you're eating unhealthy food is because you've allowed yourself to get so hungry between meals that you'll reach for any food you can get your hands on. The solution? Eat six small meals throughout the day instead of three bigger meals. But such “grazing” can cause you to lose track of how many calories consumed, not to mention this eating style's impracticality (how are you supposed to sit down to a family meal if you've been eating all day?). Plus, a 2013 study found that people with type 2 diabetes who ate just two meals per day for 12 weeks lost more weight than people who ate six meals per day.

To prevent mindless snacking, my fix is to eat three meals substantial enough to carry me from morning to noon to evening. I'm great with breakfast and dinner, but lunch? Not only am I horrible at bringing my own lunch to work, but also I’ve never figured out how to make a lunch that jives with my vegetarian lifestyle, keeps me full until I eat dinner around 7:30 P.M., and is something I want to eat—until now.

Behold, the perfect, easy-to-make, filling, meat-free sandwich. Assemble this beauty in the morning, enjoy at noon, and you'll stay satisfied until evening.

Perfect Workday Vegetarian Sandwich

• 2 slices seeded whole-wheat bread, lightly toasted
• 1 tablespoon spicy hummus
• 1 teaspoon organic mustard
• 1 handful baby kale
• ¼  cucumber, thinly sliced
• ¼ red pepper, thinly sliced
• ½ avocado, thinly sliced

Instructions: You know what to do—smear hummus and mustard on each side of the bread; build by piling up ingredients. Pack in a reusable container, or wrap in aluminum foil (make sure to recycle). Tuck an apple and a bottle of kombucha into your bag, and you’re good to go!

Discuss this Blog Entry 2

on Aug 9, 2015

Good to know that substantial meals are key to preventing mindless snacking.

on Aug 11, 2015

Three solid meals a day = mandatory!! That's what I tell all my clients! It prevents overdoing it later and even the next day. Balance is KEY!!

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